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Exploring Prince Edward Island One Hiking Trail and Beach at a Time

Singing Sands Beach, Basin Head Provincial Park

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Balsam Hollow Trail


Balsam Hollow Trail gallery

Quick Facts

Difficulty easy
Trail Type mixed
Distance 1 km return
Estimated Time 30 mins
Surface Type old road, crushed rock
Elevation Change 8 meters
Features history, interpretive signs
Trail Markers signs
Scenery Rating beautiful
Maintenance Rating well maintained
Cell Reception strong
Dog Friendly on a leash
Fees yes


Hiking Trails of PEI Book


The Balsam Hollow Trail starts by following Lover's Lane, an old gravel road that takes you towards the stream. If you visit at the right time of year you will see lots of wildflowers along the old road. After a short distance the trail leaves the old road by crossing a small bridge. This is where the trail starts to follow the stream. The rest of the trail follows the stream, crossing it several times with small bridges. After the second bridge the trail travels on both sides of the stream forming long narrow loops. The west side goes through the woods higher up on side of the stream valley. There are a few sets of stairs on this section.

Balsam Hollow Trail

The trail is full of interpretive signs with quotes from some of L. M. Montgomery's writings (see From the Sign below) about nature and about the Acadian forest that surrounds you. The trail travels through a mixedwood forest of balsam fir (where it got it's name), spruce, and birch. The forest floor surrounding the trail is usually full of ferns.



From the junction of route 13 and route 6, turn west onto Cavendish Road (route 6) towards Cavendish. Drive west on Cavendish Road for 300 meters and turn left into the parking lot for Prince Edward Island National Park - Green Gables. Park in the parking lot and buy a pass at the visitor centre.

Lovers Lane sign

Behind the visitor centre go through the barn and past the Green Gables house keeping right. The trail enters the woods just past the house by a sign marked Lover's Lane.

If you have gotten this far then you have bought a pass so make sure you explore the historic barn and house.

From the Sign

"I had always a deep love of nature. A little fern growing in the woods, a shallow sheet of June-bells under the firs, moonlight falling on the ivory column of a tall birch...all gave me...feelings which I had then no vocabulary to express." - The Alpine Path

Balsam Hollow Nature sign

From the Sign

"..I would like to go away on Sunday morning to the heart of some great solemn wood and sit down among the ferns with only the companionship of the trees and the wood-winds...and I would stay there for hours alone with nature and my own soul." - The Selected Journals of L. M Montgomery, entry of July 26, 1896

Sit in Nature sign

From the Sign

When Prince Edward Island National Park was established in 1937, many of L. M. Montgomery's favourite haunts were preserved. Now we and future woodland wanderers can share in the natural beauty of this area which gave here so much joy and inspiration throughout her life.

PEI Park sign

From the Sign

"Once and again, I stray down and listen to the duet of the brook and wind, and watch the sunbeams creeping through the dark boughs, the gossamers glimmering here and there, and the ferns growing up in the shadowy nooks." - The Selected Journals of L. M. Montgomery, entry of July 24, 1899

Balsam Hollow Trail sign

From the Sign

"The woods always seem to me to have a delicate, subtle life all their own...in the woods I like to be alone for every tree is a true old friend and every tip-toeing wind a merry comrade...I always feel so utterly and satisfyingly at home..." - My Dear Mr. M. Letters to G.B. MacMillan, September 16, 1906

Balsam Hollow Trail sign

From the Sign

"It has always seemed to me... that, amid all the commonplaces of life, I was very near to the kingdom of ideal beauty. Between it and me hung only a thin veil. I could never quite draw it aside, but sometimes a wind fluttered it and I caught a glimpse of the enchanting world beyond - only a glimpse, but those glimpses have always made life worthwhile." - The Alpine Path

Balsam Hollow Trail sign

From the Sign

Look closely among the trees and you may catch a glimpse of some of the birds and mammals found here. The diversity of the Acadian forest attracts a great variety of wildlife. Through the planting of selected tree species, we hope to re-establish more of the original forest in Prince Edward Island National Park.

Acadian forest sign

From the Sign

Acadian Forest

Much of the Island's richly diverse Acadian forest was cut down by early settlers. In Prince Edward Island National Park, only small pockets of the original forest remain. In the woodlands preserved along this trail you will find many of the trees, wildflowers and animals seem by L. M. Montgomery in her wanderings.

Acadian forest sign

Other trails in this section of the park

Trail Last Hiked: June 30, 2015.

Page Last Updated: April 2, 2020.